Just How Bad Is a Steady Diet of Video Games?

This is a TED talk from three years ago.  TED talks are full of self-importance, and self-important people – in the audience as well as on the platform.  And I’ve never heard one deal seriously with the claims of the human being from whose life all human history is dated.  Yet there can be valuable content in some of these talks.

Most TED talks are about 20 minutes.  This one is only 4:46, and the speaker leaves you wondering if he was trying to fit 20 minutes worth of words into it.  Also, it’s a little distracting to see him constantly looking down at the monitor for the next slide in his PowerPoint presentation.

The content in this video is disturbing and some of its language is a little crude.  (Some of you, once you watch it, will think I’m prudish for what I just said…but others will appreciate the warning.)

At this point, you’re wondering why I am even posting such a video.  It’s because the content is a warning.  It’s not that we have so little to alarm us in modern culture that we need to be warned about some other negative aspect of where life is headed.  It’s that we don’t seem to realize just how seriously wrong things are going for some people in our culture – in this case our young men.  This portends awful consequences for the future.

The speaker is Philip Zimbardo, an 82-year-old psychologist and professor emeritus at Stanford University.  Prior to his time at Stanford, he taught at Yale, New York University, and Columbia University.  He has co-authored a popular college textbook on psychology and has been elected president of the American Psychological Association.  In other words, he’s the sort of person that educated people respect – especially on a subject like this.  If the results of this research alarm him, how much more the followers of Christ.  How much harm can come from excessive use of video games – both to the individuals involved and the society around them?  Watch and listen.

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